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Letters: The media isn't representing the majority

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  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    July 31, 2013 1:01 a.m.

    I guess Jeff hasn't noticed Utah is a bit different than the rest of the world.

    And in many cases, that is a good thing...

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 31, 2013 6:42 a.m.

    I wish I had some context as to what Mr. Porter was referring. Who portrayed something you so vehemently disagreed that you wrote a letter to the editor?

    On a very general level, I agree we do need to be more active. Writing out representatives is always a good thing.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    July 31, 2013 6:52 a.m.

    "Use your Facebook, Twitter or other social media sites to express your views."

    Can't I just use my Facebook page to share pictures, funny stories, and communicate with my friends and family? Must I use my Facebook page to communicate my political views? My "friends" and family who espouse constant political views on Facebook find themselves being hidden. I don't open Facebook in the evenings to discuss politics.

    Oh, and your "majority" doesn't mean everyone else's "majority." It is anecdotal at best.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    July 31, 2013 7:00 a.m.

    Jeff,

    The unease you feel with "the media" merely reflects your unwillingness to let reality into your life.

    Your discomfort with the news says more about you than it does the news.

  • Cincinnatus Kearns, UT
    July 31, 2013 7:48 a.m.

    So, if I'm not in agreement with Mr. Porter in all my views, I'm just "minority sleaze?"

    As CHS 85 said, this is anecdotal at best. Simply because the people you work and associate with share many of your same views, that does not mean everyone, or even a majority, do. Your "opinion" is exactly that Mr. Porter. Your opinion. Your letter has no basis in scientific polling or statistics.

    And, FYI, Richard Nixon beat you to the term "silent majority" by decades. He too, was convinced that the silent majority supported him. How did that work out for Nixon?

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    July 31, 2013 8:05 a.m.

    Many people don't express themselves because they either don't have the interest, or feel they're not educated enough on the issues to have a compelling argument.

    Look at the regular respondents here on the D-News, those who are well educated on the issues and cogent enough to formulate compelling responses. Frequently we'll see somebody voice their opinion here with a fairly simplistic argument that is easily dissected and critiqued.

    The regulars are capable of wading through conflicting information, accommodating the complexities of a "grey world", and still can offer a strong opinion. I would venture to guess the number of left-leaning thinkers in this group is relatively high, compared to most people in Utah. Same for most college graduates.

    For many, jumping into a debate and getting swatting down is not appealing. It's easier to select a source of media inline with your basic thinking (Beck, Rush, Fox, MSNBC, etc) and stick to repeating what you hear, rather than sift through the material, understand it, reconcile with your worldview, and then offer an original opinion or response.

    The result is a type of anti-intellectualism.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    July 31, 2013 8:26 a.m.

    @10cc "Ditto"

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 31, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    Jeff, you're not exactly the next Marshall McLuhan here. Indeed, I'm not even sure why you're worried about the so called media; you yourself suggest turning to social media to forward your viewpoint rather than rely on the traditional media. It's the way things are these days, no one wants to be challenged but rather expect to see only themselves in their media today. As for writing your lawmaker with your latest gripe; I don't know too many lawmakers but I'd bet they get so much of this stuff that they have to ignore most of it in order to function.

  • m.g. scott clearfield, UT
    July 31, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    The part of the media that I really believe is not doing their job of being the eyes and ears of America is the national media that is supposedly there to be a check on our government officials. Can you imagine if there were no FOX News, and a few radio hosts. That is about the only outlet that is skepticle of Democrats and especially the Obama administration. If not for the voices heard on FOX, Obama would be reigning as the greatest President in American history. In fact probably called one of the greatest people ever to live in human history. As I write this I laugh that some of you who might read this also believe that Obama is those things. Time for a reality check.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    July 31, 2013 9:03 a.m.

    @10CC – “For many, jumping into a debate and getting swatting down is not appealing.”

    Those are all excellent points, especially this one.

    We should all recognize that making others too uncomfortable can sometimes make them retreat back into their bubbles where too often their own vague and emotionally based worldviews are reinforced in ways that do not lead to growth in knowledge and understanding.

    That said, newbies who are tactful I think have little to fear. It’s the ones who, having been nursed on the milk of ignorance & arrogance by some media pundits, make these grand, overly simplistic and easily refuted statements that should expect to get swatted a bit.

    Most of those either go away or continue to make a lot of bare assertions without engaging in the debate. Assuming they care, I’ve always wondered how they reconcile the cognitive dissonance.

    The moderators do a fair job though in keeping thing from degenerating too far and so good discussions can be found… much more than on many other “flame throwing” sites.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 31, 2013 9:12 a.m.

    I agree. For far too long we have been silent on a bad joke. For decades we have seen our wages fall flat and decrease while the richies at the top have made a killing! For years and years we have heard about "trickle-down" economics. Nothing more than a Ponzi scheme. A failed economic policy.

    It is time for the silent majority to arise and start a new progressive era. We need to protect our jobs, our benefits, and our families. We do not live to serve corporations but they live to serve us. Time to join the fight and turn this completely upside down economic policy back onto the right track. The future of our country depends on it! Lets get back to the economic policy and tax rates of the 50s! They worked fine then, why not now?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 31, 2013 9:13 a.m.

    I would not expect the media to represent the majority. I wouldn't expect the media to represent me. I would not expect the media to represent ANYBODY. That would make them PART OF the political machine (If they represent the majority, or the current administration, or the party in control).

    IMO That's the problem with our media today. They are too much a part of the political machine.

    IMO the media should be "independent". They should be able to express any view they want (majority or not).

    But it seems that many in the media today are more and more uncomfortable with expressing any views the current administration would frown at. Maybe it's from the early behavior of this administration when they started banning news agancies that didn't report friendly views of them from press conferences. We stopped that... but I think the chilling effect is still out there.

    Bottom line... the media should be completely independent. Not afraid of the current administration (that's how you get shoddy news like Provda). Not just representing the majority. They need to be INDEPENDENT of the political machine.

    We should have seperation between media and State.

  • Longfellow Holladay, UT
    July 31, 2013 9:52 a.m.

    Jeff, your comments about getting involved are well taken.

    However, the majority of the media are well past redemption. They routinely distort and misrepresent the facts to hype a story. Both the liberal and conservative media do this.

    Additionally, the media routinely under report or ignore the news that is incompatible with the newsperson's worldview. The rise of the Internet as an alternate source of information has highlighted this phenomena.

    Finally, the media periodically lie about the facts to sell a point of view. The Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman incident and resulting trial was an especially egregious example of this. NBC's intentional editing of the 911 call to portray George Zimmerman as a racist is a prime example. The widespread use of the term "white Hispanic" to describe George Zimmerman and the use of pictures of Trayvon Martin that misrepresented his actual appearance at the time of the incident are further examples. The media have become propagandists that would make Joseph Goebbels proud.

  • FreedomFighter41 Orem, UT
    July 31, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    I agree, the silent majority is tired of the nonsense obstructionism that has infected our Congress, especially the House. Never should a government have a goal to merely repeal laws/obstruct. We need statesmen who are actually interested in governing. We need to stand up to folks like Mike Lee and show them who really runs this country!

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:06 a.m.

    @Longfellow

    "However, the majority of the media are well past redemption. They routinely distort and misrepresent the facts to hype a story. Both the liberal and conservative media do this.

    Additionally, the media routinely under report or ignore the news that is incompatible with the newsperson's worldview. The rise of the Internet as an alternate source of information has highlighted this phenomena. "

    =============

    That's the free market at work. Nothing more or less. A news organization primary function is not to inform, but earn profit. They will report what will turn into subscriptions, viewers, and clicks. Hence, the circus of the George Zimmerman trial, why? People were watching, clicking and buying. The lack of coverage of is because no one is watching, clicking or buying.

    I understand Fox is the most watched, but there is a reason they are the almost he sole provider of a "conservative spin"...it's because the free market has shown the money to be somewhere else. Anything more would simply over saturate the market need of "conservative news"

    If the trend of popular stops heading left, and goes to the right, so will the media. It's about $$.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:13 a.m.

    Re: "It is time for the silent majority to arise and start a new progressive era."

    Yeah, yeah -- we have nothing to lose but our chains!

    Except everything.

    The vast, vast majority clearly understands the moral and economic bankruptcy of the "progressive" [newspeak for "socialist/communist"] philosophy. And, we're also quite aware of the fact that liberals' "new progressive era" would look very much like the thoroughly discredited, old, drab, gray, REPRESSIVE, Soviet era.

    And, we're not buying it.

  • George New York, NY
    July 31, 2013 10:16 a.m.

    This type of letter and comments along similar reasoning always make me wonder what it is that makes it necessary for some people to believe that their views are shared by the majority. Do people fear that if their views are not shared by the majority, "the silent majority, the moral majority" that they are somehow invalid?

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:27 a.m.

    @procuradoralfiscal

    "The vast, vast majority clearly understands the moral and economic bankruptcy of the "progressive" [newspeak for "socialist/communist"] philosophy."

    We'd all love to see the hard data to back this "clear understanding" up. I'll wait.....

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:37 a.m.

    Re: "Never should a government have a goal to merely repeal laws/obstruct."

    So, Congress in 1865 was wrong to repeal slavery and obstruct its continuing as an American institution?

    And, it's interesting that we hear nothing but liberal praise for Wendy Davis, the Democrat Texas state senator who obstructed changes to Texas abortion law.

    Hmmmmmm.

    I think what we're all hearing is that standard liberal mantra -- "never should a government have a goal to merely repeal laws/obstruct the agenda I want advanced."

    Or, that even more famous liberal philosophy -- "all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

  • wendell provo, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:46 a.m.

    Mr. Porter,
    Thank you for writing. While I don't agree with much of what you wrote, I am grateful that there are people who are willing to share their beliefs in the public sphere. We need more open and honest political discussion. With that said, I'm sure that a good Christian man such as yourself believes that respecting the beliefs of others is a reflection of someone with "great values, morals and ethics".

    You may feel frustrated that your voice is not being heard, and you have every right to speak your mind, but I was sorely disappointed that you would resort to name calling by referring to people like me as "minority sleaze". I suggest that you remember that name-calling is childish, immature, and unnecessary in political discussions. I realize it happens on both sides of politics, but that does not make it appropriate.

    I am a good, honest, and upstanding person, and I don't think referring to someone as "minority sleaze" is appropriate in any way. Perhaps we don't agree on what constitutes morality, but that does not mean that either one of us is a bad person.

  • the old switcharoo mesa, AZ
    July 31, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    FOX news is everywhere. What on Earth are you complaining about?

    Will you just parrot the idea that there is no conservative news you trust forever even though that's where you get the idea from?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:51 a.m.

    Re: "We'd all love to see the hard data to back this 'clear understanding' up."

    Here are a couple:

    -- The Nation has not yet fallen, at least not completely, into the communist/socialist sphere.

    -- Americans are repelled by the thought of living in a communist state -- see a Mar 2013 Gallup poll showing an American favorability rating for the last true communist state at 12%.

    You're not really suggesting that Americans DON'T believe communism/socialism is morally and economically bankrupt, are you?

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:51 a.m.

    @procuradorfiscal
    "The vast, vast majority clearly understands the moral and economic bankruptcy of the "progressive" [newspeak for "socialist/communist"] philosophy. And, we're also quite aware of the fact that liberals' "new progressive era" would look very much like the thoroughly discredited, old, drab, gray, REPRESSIVE, Soviet era.

    And, we're not buying it."

    Actually we did. We re-elected Obama, added a couple Democratic senate members, and cast more votes for Democratic house candidates than Republican ones (Republicans only still control the house because of how voters are split up in districts).

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    July 31, 2013 11:44 a.m.

    @procuradorfiscal

    "You're not really suggesting that Americans DON'T believe communism/socialism is morally and economically bankrupt, are you?"

    Um, no.

    I also don't believe that "progressive" means [newspeak for "socialist/communist"] just as I don't believe that "conservative" means [newspeak for "fascist"]. See, I can play word games too.

    Still waiting for that data to back up the "vast, vast majority" claim.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 31, 2013 11:54 a.m.

    Re: "Never should a government have a goal to merely repeal laws/obstruct."

    IMO the founding fathers WANTED proposals with narrow/partisan support to fail.

    They wanted the President to be obstructed by Congress, that's why Congress is there. That's why they required a Super-Majority for all super-important things (like ammending the Constitution). That's why the filibuster is allowed today. They wanted most government action to be blocked UNLESS it had widespread support.

    The founders were statesmen. They intended for actions that had huge widespread appeal (call it "bypartisan support" in today's venacular) to pass. They didn't want votes to be divided along party lines and pass if one party had one more person than the other party. They actually wanted things to have almost unanimous support before they pass (which would require compromise, negotiation, statesmanship, and "good" legislation, not the "We don't need any Republican votes we have the numbers and can pass whatever we want"... mind set, and legislation that has no "win" for the other side.

    They thought making obstruction easier than passing... would require Congress to be Statesmen... and only propose things that would have widespread/bypartisan support.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 31, 2013 11:57 a.m.

    If Jeff has really traveled around this great country of ours,
    and has met good hard working people with values, ethics, ect.

    Then he probably also found out that most hard working Americans, paying taxes, paying bills, and raising families...

    Were also gay, lesbian, women, black, hispanic, Muslim, and Democrats.

    This veiled attempt to say only Americans that are White, Male, Chrisian, Republican, Tea-Partiers can be the only hard working, or ethical, or high valued Americans is so Rush Limbaugh, Fox News-esque -- it makes me want to vomit.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 31, 2013 12:31 p.m.

    To "The Real Maverick" the failed ponzi scheme is not what Reagan started. The failed Ponzi scheme is liberalism and Progressivism.

    Here is a hard fact for you and your ilk to take. The GINI coefficient, that is the measure of income inequality, has increased more under Obama than under Bush, Clinton, or Reagan. See
    "Obama Calls Income Gap 'Wrong' — After Widening It" at IBD. Just viewing the history of Progressivism/Liberalism over the past 40 years shows that the more Progressive policies are enacted, the worse the inequality becomes. Progressivism is a failure.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    July 31, 2013 1:06 p.m.

    "...the minority sleaze..."

    -- Jeff Porter, author of this letter

    Jeff,

    Your comment leads me to believe that you have no morals or honor yourself. Calling your opponents "sleaze" indicates that you're unwilling to listen or discuss their points of view and will accept none other than your own.

    Additionally, I find it discouraging that the Deseret News would even print a letter that denigrates minorities (whichever minority).

    The fact is, Jeff, that whether or not you agree with those "minorities", they deserve to be treated with respect.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    July 31, 2013 1:12 p.m.

    @RedShirt – “…the more Progressive policies are enacted, the worse the inequality becomes.”

    I’m always amazed (well, not so much anymore) when people lay out facts (or partial facts) and then state conclusions that are exactly opposite of what logically follows from those facts.

    In this case, income inequality was lowest between WWII and the 1970’s and began a sharp widening in the early 1980’s (under what president?). That this trend has continued under Obama simply confirms that all the policies started in the 80’s – low marginal tax rates, deregulation, corporate power, and crony capitalism, none of which Obama has been able to redress due to the power of the Right – are still working “wonderfully.”

    But I’m baffled why this is apparently upsetting to you? That the 1% have bounced back richer than ever from the Great Recession (not so much for the other 99%) should be a point of pride and celebration for your “ilk”… what gives?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 31, 2013 1:45 p.m.

    When I read these comments... I'm amazed at the lengths some people on the left will go to in order to find something to be offended at.

    Did you read the article with an open mind? When he said "Minority"... he didn't mean "gay, lesbian, women, black, hispanic, Muslim, and Democrats". Obviously he was refering to minority in opinion/viewpoint (not race, etc). Ie conservive vs progressive, religious vs non-religious, various political views, not race, and the others listed!

    Don't automatically think "RACE" every time you hear "minority"! That's not the default meaning of "minority" in most people's minds. I don't think he was talking about Race or sexual orientation at all!

    But some people will bend over backwards to be offended... and even mis-state his words in order to get OTHERS to become offended!

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 31, 2013 2:01 p.m.

    To "Tyler D" does it really matter who was president when the problem started to grow? If the problem was "low marginal tax rates, deregulation, corporate power, and crony capitalism", then why is it that income inequality has accelerated under Obama's increased regulation, increased tax rates, and fascism? Doesn't that imply that the more Progressive your policies are, the greater the income disparity becomes?

    Explain how the right has been able to really do anything to thwart Obama's regulation and incrased taxes? See "$1.8 trillion shock: Obama regs cost 20-times estimate" in the Washington Examiner.

    Just look at other nations around the world. The more collectivist (Progressive) policies they adopt, the greater the income disparity becomes. If you look at the raw distribution of income, the US is actually quite even, while nations like Germany and England have less equal distributions (this is something the GINI coefficient can miss).

    Conservatives take no pride or shame in seeing that some people have succeeded in these rough times.

    The problem is when Progressives and their ilk keep trying the same failed policies over and over again and can't figure out why things keep getting worse.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    July 31, 2013 2:05 p.m.

    @2 bits;

    I read the letter with an open mind (you apparently closed your eyes). I read "minority sleaze", not simply "minority". How is it that you don't find that offensive? What if he had said "LDS sleaze" instead, would that have triggered your sense of offense? Mormons, after all, are also a minority.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 31, 2013 2:39 p.m.

    @Redshirt
    [If the problem was "low marginal tax rates, deregulation, corporate power, and crony capitalism", then why is it that income inequality has accelerated under Obama's increased regulation, increased tax rates]

    Because most of that regulation has been blocked by Republicans who vehemently oppose Dodd-Frank, anyone running the Consumer Financial Protection Board, and then there's the continued efforts of lobbyists who fund people in Congress (more than ever now that SuperPacs run political financing) that made things like Dodd-Frank rather watered down in the first place. Taxes didn't go up until the start of 2013, after the entirety of Obama's first term.

    "The more collectivist (Progressive) policies they adopt, the greater the income disparity becomes."

    That is incorrect. Just look at the very collectivist states in Scandinavia with extremely high tax rates and you'll find the nations amongst the lowest GINI coefficient. We have more income inequality than pretty much every single western European nation. Do you want to argue that we're more progressive than the nations that actually are socialist?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 31, 2013 3:26 p.m.

    @2 bits
    Cottonwood Heights, UT

    OK then

    How about the irony of the letter writer writing in complaining about "The media isn't representing the majority" to the LDS own/published Deseret News in Utah.

    Does that make you feel any better?

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    July 31, 2013 4:48 p.m.

    RedShirt said: To "Tyler D" does it really matter who was president when the problem started to grow?

    Yes, because it shows that policy changes under Saint Reagan was the beginning of the end.

    The problem is when conservatives and their corporate elected puppets use the same failed policies and insist they're working, even though the evidence of there failure since the 80's is well documented. The guy who created the "trickle down theory" has also said it didn't and doesn't work. I suspect they know this, but since they represent business owners and corporate monopolies how does it help their bottom line to have a middle class?

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 31, 2013 4:55 p.m.

    To "atl134" no it hasn't. Obama has added all sorts of regulations. See "$1.8 trillion shock: Obama regs cost 20-times estimate" in the Washington Examiner to see how much the regulations in Obamacare alone are costing us. Then read "Obama Administration Added $9.5 Billion in Red Tape in July" in US News. Apparently Obama is able to get all sorts of regulations added with the help of Congress.

    The GINI coefficient doesn't accurately dscribe the income inequality. If you look up the limitations of the GINI coefficient, one thing that it doesn't distinguish well is range of incomes. If you look at graphs of income distribution (NOT GINI), the flatter the line, the more equal the distribution of income. The US has one of the flatest lines in the world. Sweden is close, but has a higher slope than the US.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 31, 2013 6:47 p.m.

    I wonder if Jeff feels the hardworking, high valued, ethical Christian Minority in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, ect.should be shouted and drowned out to make way for the Muslim Majority for the same reason his letter suggests in the Deseret News?

  • Will Kane Salt Lake City USA, UT
    July 31, 2013 10:11 p.m.

    After scanning these comments I'm surprised that most posters can even appreciate their own intolerancia and wrinkles in the mirror. It's truly amazing that some folks can do so with a straight face. After visiting these comment boards for a couple of months now it's obvious that almost all of the posters only do so to reinforce their own biases, and get praise from those who agree.
    Adios, muchachos e muchachas. I can only stomach so much...

  • prelax Murray, UT
    Aug. 1, 2013 2:40 a.m.

    By the stories they choose, they shall be known.

    The media is far left on illegal workers being here, and the stories they choose to run show that. When ICE took president Obama to court, (and the federal judge approved it). Most media ignored it. The union that represents the people who would have to decide who gets legalized under any new immigration law said in a letter Tuesday that the Obama administration is not ready to handle the influx of applications.

    And Kenneth Palinkas, the president of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Council, which represents the 12,000 immigration officers and staff who work at USCIS, warned House Republicans that even flirting with a limited legalization such as just granting citizenship rights to so-called Dream Act immigrants could lead to problems. It was ignored by 90% of the media.

    All the scandals lately, how many were the result of investigative reporters? Fanning the flames of the Martin trial was a favorite pass time of the US media. Trying to scare Republicans into another amnesty is another area the national media has stepped over the lines to supermarket reporting.

    Does the press represent the majority of people?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 1, 2013 10:28 a.m.

    I do think it is funny that any segment can both associate itself as a majority and a minority at the same time. White and Mormon.... you belong to both groups. It is also folly to assume one is in the majority when the polling sample is those one associates with.

    And then you have comments like those from prelax... who claim 90% of the media ignored certain stories.... when only 30 seconds on google would disprove those cliams... I guess unless you have a very selective view on what 90% of the media means.

    People flock to groups and media that reaffirm their own viewpoints. It is just human nature.

  • Blue Bolshevik Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 1, 2013 5:25 p.m.

    Most of the time when I "get involved" and express my political views here, the DN censors me. What does that tell you about being active in the political process?

  • prelax Murray, UT
    Aug. 2, 2013 2:41 a.m.

    Yes by all means, go to google or bing, and do a news search. See how many newspapers parrot what the others say. On page three you find the individual news stories.

    The Arizona Republic talks about Several members of Arizona’s congressional delegation have calling on Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to release data the government collects about immigrants crossing the border illegally but refuses to make public.

    How about the An audit of the Department of Homeland Security found that the agency has lost track of more than 1 million foreign visitors. The foreign citizens came to the United States on temporary visas, but DHS can't confirm that they've actually left the United States. In 1996, Congress mandated the creation of an entry-exit system at all ports of entry to track visa overstayers, but it has yet to be implemented. The audit was conducted by the Government Accountability Office.

    Only a couple of papers nationally carried the story. The media is failing America.